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To DSG or not to DSG…?

golfdave

Autocross Champion
Location
Scotland (U.K.)
Car(s)
Mk7 Golf GT Estate
Get a manual whilst car manufactures still make them...

The only time I will get a DSG is when my left leg gets totally FUBAR due to health conditions.

I've driven DSG......just NO...to much of the car "thinking" it knows best...like many of the stupid safety systems, like lane assist.
 
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Raguvian

Autocross Champion
Location
Denver
Car(s)
2019 GSW 4MO 6MT
Manual will likely hold its value better than DSGs, especially in the long term.

I'd drive both, but if you wanted a manual I certainly wouldn't settle for a DSG or vice versa. Get the car you want, otherwise you will regret it.
 

Blueballs

Go Kart Newbie
Location
SLC, UT
In looking for my first GTI I have been holding out for a 6MT, but have noticed the DSGs are trading at $1-3k less than MTs.

Curious if others have had the debate and made the choice to switch based on availability and price? especially in this current market, seems everything it trading at a premium.
I own a 2017 GTI 6spd. I bought it brand new, and currently have 93k miles on the car. Here are my thoughts regarding the manual for this car. Remember, this is all my own opinion, coming from someone with experience with the manual transmission:

1. From the factory, this 6spd is so so. The clutch is very numb feeling and the shifter is sloppy. The OEM golf ball shift knob is really cool, but too light for my taste.
2. The OEM clutch is very weak. The moment you tune the car, if you have any sort of heavy foot, the clutch will slip very soon, which ultimately means you will need to do a clutch upgrade, which on this car, is not cheap (will explain later on in this post).
3. Rev hang on the OEM clutch is pretty prevalent, which makes quick shifting almost impossible.
4. The pedals are great, but could be placed a little better for heel-toe shifting
5. In order to enjoy the experience of the manual with this car, you will need to basically upgrade everything. Clutch, shift knob, shift bracket, bushings
6. Aftermarket clutches are expensive, and also seem to be very weakly made, which results in more than necessary clutch purchases.

Basically, since you will ultimately have to upgrade the clutch on this platform, be ready to spend a good amount of money on them. I highly recommend learning how to install a clutch yourself (I have done three installs on my GTI myself with no issues on the install itself), or you will be spending $700-$1000+for a shop to do it.

I am now on my third aftermarket clutch with my car. I don't drive that hard as 90% of my driving is city work. When my OEM clutch slipped, I bought a DKM Stage 2 MB clutch. I was Eurodyne Stage 2 91oct IS20 at this time, and about 20k miles into it, I transitioned to IS38 on a custom 91oct tune. The clutch was great. It lasted me about 50k miles. This kit cost me about $1000 after buying the kit, hardware, tools, and fluid for the job. I installed it myself, which saved a lot of money. After 50k miles, it started slipping. I had no issues with the clutch, so I decided to get the same DKM Stage 2 cutch kit for my second aftermarket clutch (installed myself). I was on the same tune running the same IS38 turbo, so nothing on the car has changed. Installed that clutch, and about 8k miles into it, reverse and first gear started to be difficult to get into gear. Then about 1k miles later, my slave cylinder failed (a very common failure on this car especially with DKM clutch kits). Due to that, I had to now purchase a third clutch kit, which I have installed myself as well. I decided to go with a different clutch brand because I didn't want to deal with DKM again. I decided to go with SouthBend Stage 3 Endurance kit. This kit is very expensive, which was why I never went with them from the beginning, but so far it feels very good. I'm still on the break-in, but it has really transformed the way the car feels and drives. A lot more driveline connection.

Final thoughts:

As much as I love how my 6spd GTI drives when everything is working, I am pretty frustrated at how I have gone through two aftermarket clutches, and on my third, with under 100k miles on my car! I have owned two BMW M3's before. One was an E46 M3 that was pushing almost 600hp with my supercharger, and the other was an E92 M3, fully stock. Both were manuals, and on my E46 M3 pushing almost double the hp and more than double the tq from the factory, the clutch didn't start slipping until after 20k miles of supercharged power! But the kicker was that it was the original clutch, and I had 130k miles on it before I supercharged it, which means I didn't have to replace the clutch until about 150k miles! On the original clutch!! And this car was driven way harder than my GTI!! Way harder!! For some reason, these aftermarket clutch companies must be making very weak and crappy clutches for the GTI, because to be on my fourth clutch on this car with not even 100k miles on the ODO is insane! Just makes me crazy! Why are the clutches so weak, OEM and aftermarket! And then to buy a Southbend product, you're paying Porsche level prices for the kit!! Insane!!

I love my manual, but if I were you, I would buy the DSG. No, it won't be as fun if you are a manual type of guy like I am, but your wallet will be thanking you in the long run!! I love banging gears with my exhaust cutout open, with NLS, and getting that sublime feeling of proper rev-matching and heel-toe-downshifting, BUT it all comes at a high cost for this car. I don't know why, but it does.

One plus is that manual cars are rising in value over paddle-shifted cars or automatics right now, and I foresee manual sporty cars going up in high value in the future due to the experience it gives drivers that is becoming lost in todays cars, so in that regards, buy a manual, but if you plan on driving the car a lot, then it will cost you a lot for the long term in this car.

I will be doing an in-depth DKM vs Southbend review here soon, after I put some real miles on the clutch after break-in, so look forward to that. i will be a video review on my youtube channel Jaces Own World. I prefer video because here in the forums, you get so many mixed answers and non-real reviews, that its hard to take things at face value.
 

ChrisMk77

Autocross Champion
Location
Sweden
Car(s)
2018 GTI Performance
Drive what you like but it is strange hearing that manuals have better resale when it is the opposite in Sweden even with how rare manual MK7 GTI/R are here. Probably something to do with Americans thinking of manuals as sporty and special when Europeans does that for DCT transmissions.

But as an DSG GTI owner my biggest issue with it is the gearing, 4th is way to tall to the point that it is not really faster than a manual or R when it would be if it had the shorter gearing like the Clubsport, Cupra or TCR.
 

jimlloyd40

Autocross Champion
Location
Phoenix
Car(s)
2018 SE DSG
Drive what you like but it is strange hearing that manuals have better resale when it is the opposite in Sweden even with how rare manual MK7 GTI/R are here. Probably something to do with Americans thinking of manuals as sporty and special when Europeans does that for DCT transmissions.

But as an DSG GTI owner my biggest issue with it is the gearing, 4th is way to tall to the point that it is not really faster than a manual or R when it would be if it had the shorter gearing like the Clubsport, Cupra or TCR.
Is your DSG tuned?
 

Keehs360

Autocross Champion
Location
Denver
Car(s)
Mk7.5
Drive what you like but it is strange hearing that manuals have better resale when it is the opposite in Sweden even with how rare manual MK7 GTI/R are here. Probably something to do with Americans thinking of manuals as sporty and special when Europeans does that for DCT transmissions.

But as an DSG GTI owner my biggest issue with it is the gearing, 4th is way to tall to the point that it is not really faster than a manual or R when it would be if it had the shorter gearing like the Clubsport, Cupra or TCR.
I believe the manual holding value better. They’re getting scarce. And emissions getting tighter and tighter makes the manual give a shitty experience (stock) while making manufacturers considering axing manuals all together
 

ChrisMk77

Autocross Champion
Location
Sweden
Car(s)
2018 GTI Performance
I believe the manual holding value better. They’re getting scarce. And emissions getting tighter and tighter makes the manual give a shitty experience (stock) while making manufacturers considering axing manuals all together
And in NA GTIs is the biggest golf seller right? In Sweden the R outsells the GTI and out of 2400 MK7 Golfs for sale on Blocket only 100 is over 200 hp. 😄
 

Keehs360

Autocross Champion
Location
Denver
Car(s)
Mk7.5
And in NA GTIs is the biggest golf seller right? In Sweden the R outsells the GTI and out of 2400 MK7 Golfs for sale on Blocket only 100 is over 200 hp. 😄
I’ve no idea which version of the golf sells more here in North America. I’d defer to u.
 
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